Moralizing Against “Vile Games” in U.K.

In the wake of the Byron Review, Telegraph columnist Jenny McCartney writes about what she sees as a lack of morality in violent video games:

Dr Byron seems a sensible woman, and no doubt she has done her best to contain the spread of some of the more obnoxious material on offer without incurring the ire of the games lobby. But one of her remarks in an interview last week struck me as particularly, and depressingly, modern. “My review is not about making any kind of moral pronouncements,” she said, “although I do think that it is important to look at the desensitisation to violence.”

…The word “moral” still has deeply unfashionable associations with… the “moral majority” protesting against the “tide of filth” in books and television in the US. How tame and inoffensive that tide looks now.

Yet the truth, surely, is that the majority of us would indeed recoil from the idea that our teenage son or daughter was upstairs playing Manhunt 2… It is insidiously corrupting to their view of themselves and other people… Perhaps if more people, including teenagers, were prepared to voice moral objections to this toxic stuff, it would no longer be possible to lampoon them for caring.

Meanwhile, the Daily Mail asked British TV personality Anne Diamond (left) to render her opinion on some popular, violent games. Not surprisingly, Diamond issued a beatdown::

After seeing them Anne said: “Just reviewing these games, made my hair stand on end. I have never got into computer games.but my sons all love them.

“I have to guard constantly that they don’t use my ignorance to play games that I wouldn’t allow in the house, if only I knew their content.

“Some of the games were so mindless it would be hard to see them as a destructive influence. But others were sickening in their gratuitous use of violence and bloodthirsty imagery.”

Her comments include:

Call of Duty 4: Perhaps it might be OK for older teenage boys, but only in small doses.

GP: “Older teenage boys” can join the real British Army and be shipped to Afghanistan. But it’s best to limit their COD4?

Resident Evil 4: This game shouldn’t be allowed to be sold, even to adults… when I played I was stabbed to death with pitchforks amid fountains of my own blood. This kind of violence can only be bad for you.

GP: News flash, Anne. Everybody who plays this game at one time or another gets stabbed to death with pitchforks amid fountains of their own blood. But it’s virtual blood. It’s a game. Are you suggesting that zombie movies be banned, as well?

GP: The link on the Jenny McCartney column was sent in by our old pal Jack Thompson, in between threats to sue us.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditEmail this to someone


  1. 0
    figsnake12 says:

    .MANHUNT 2
    I am sick of seeing wound up BLOODY MOTHERS who think they know better than we do about video games AFTER NINE YEARS OF GAMING ON OUR PART.

  2. 0
    Erik ( User Karma: 0 ) says:


    You damned yourself to gaming hell (where Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing is the only game available) when you mentioned Virtua Fighter, but then redeemed yourself when you mentioned Street Fighter.

  3. 0
    DarrelBT says:

    She has a right to criticise Dead or Alive.

    It’s a mockery to fighting games compared to the likes of Virtua Fighter and Street Fighter. 😛

  4. 0
    Erik ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    As she has stated that games have a negative effect on people and as she has stated to playing the game I suggest she quit her job and go into seclusion for the safety of others and herself.

  5. 0
    Jeremy ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    LOL, Yes COD4 is only ok for older teens but in small dosages now full fledge combat where they are actually shooting other human beings well by all means that is ok and righteous but killing pixels that’s just immoral.

  6. 0
    Azhrarn, Death-of-Faxmachines says:

    i’ve been for gaming for a large part of my life now. (got our first PC at the age of 10 and i’m 27 now) I played Doom and its ilk when i was 11/12 or so, and while i do not own a large number of the games she would consider “to violent, even for adults” i do enjoy a good bit of senselessly violent gaming at times mainly to relieve stress.
    Has this desensitised me to violence? No it certainly has not. I abhor violence of any kind in the real world, i’d rather talk things out than get angry. Fights are things i avoid like the plague, despite knowing how to defend myself if i have no choice.
    Not bad for someone who has been exposed to games for 17 years now.

    People spout so much unfounded nonsense about gaming its ridiculous, and its even scarier that people actually believe them.

    I put most of it down to a fear of the new medium (as most are TV personalities), its no different than TV or Rock’n Roll was 50 odd years ago. Embrace the new medium and learn from it, know what those cute little signs mean on a game box so you don’t give your 6-year-old Slaughterer 5 for his birthday, but stop demonising the whole medium.

  7. 0
    Grendal says:

    @ KillianD

    God no, her head would probably explode :). In all seriousness though don’t people realize just how absurd the violence in most titles is? I mean blood just doesn’t do the thing it does in games. I mean how can it be so hard to see just how stylized and divorced from reality the violence that is so often raged against is. Maybe it will desensitize you to really cartoonish violence in which humans are basically big fountains of highly pressurized blood, but that isn’t going to help you in situations were violence is realistic.

    A little allegorical story for everybody, recently frontline did a nice little thing called “Bush’s War” now I’m not here to pass judgment on the war and I’d rather this thread not devolve because that’s not the point of this story. Basically at on point footage is shown of a man getting shot during a gun battle, you see the shots strike you here the thunk and he falls. Nothing, in the total sum of my life has ever left me as utterly numb as that. I missed the next five minutes because I was just dumbstruck. Now it has to be understood, it was just a guy on a screen, I don’t think they I could even see his face, nonetheless I was more than a little effected.

    Now I think we can understand the reasons for this. Even if he was only an image, I knew he was real I knew he had a mother and a father maybe even a wife and children and I knew I had just seen another human die. Now I of all people should be pretty bloody desensitized to things like this according to Mcartney and Diamond, but I’m not obviously or I wouldn’t be writing this.

    Now I know neither explicitly trotted out the “desensitized” argument but that’s what all this talk of violence always boils down to and frankly I’ve moved from being annoyed by this to offended. If normal people are really as easily influenced as Diamond and Mcartney seem to think we have much bigger problems than whether or not video games will make us violent.

    And this is what happens when your desperately avoiding writing the paper you have due at 10 a.m.

  8. 0
    Colonel Finn says:

    It’s sadly commonplace for tabloid rags to call upon Z-list celebs to make uninformed alarmist comments. Again the lack of a need get an informed opinion means this will happen again and again.
    Game over.

  9. 0
    LujanD ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    [GP: The link on the Jenny McCartney column was sent in by our old pal Jack Thompson, in between threats to sue us.]

    I got a good chuckle out of that.

  10. 0
    what says:

    “This game shouldn’t be allowed to be sold, even to adults… when I played I was stabbed to death with pitchforks amid fountains of my own blood. This kind of violence can only be bad for you.”

    Who the fuck are you to say who can and cannot play a game? And why aren’t you complaining about torture porn films like Hostel or Saw, which are far worse?

  11. 0
    NeW SpEcTrUM ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “Meanwhile, the Daily Mail asked British TV personality Anne Diamond…”

    While we’re playing games here, let’s just invite, I dunno, a certain ditsy blond out of Hollywood to weigh in on this. They have about the same amount of credibility.

    Anyway, to say CoD4 should only be viewed in small doses. Kids watch movies like “Saving Private Ryan” and “The Killing Fields” all the way through in 8th grade. Deal with it, war exists, sheltering kids from it will not change that.

    Moving on to her comments on RE4… Too violent for adults? Ha! That’s funny, now she’s the guru for all things appropriate apparently… RE4 is hardly gory or depressing. It’s more akin to a terrorist thriller like 24 than a horror movie. Gimme a break, my younger siblings (9 and 6, respectively) list that as one of their favorite games. I could care less for what Ms.[insert inane dirty names], she has /NO/ authority over anyone but her own children, and even that I bring into question… Funny, the critics are running out of ignorant people with “Dr.” in their name so they turn to TV stars. I can’t help but laugh!

  12. 0
    FlashnFuse ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I’m 15 and I play Resident Evil 4 for the wii. It’s great fun and although it’s violent, I don’t think it’s had any effect on me besides deepening my deep internal fear of zombies

  13. 0
    odc04r ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Added a comment to the Daily Mail article. Moderated as all terrible literature pieces are but the tone was kept civil yet negative so will be interesting to see if it gets through or not. I give it 50/50 as they will want to balance the so ar negative comments with a few (artifical I dare say) positive ones before rest come through at all.

    I expect the Telegraph to be more moderate.

  14. 0
    Father Time ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    ” Perhaps if more people, including teenagers, were prepared to voice moral objections to this toxic stuff, it would no longer be possible to lampoon them for caring.”

    Moral objections? Moral objections from teenagers? Over video games?

    Yeah suuuuure and maybe if the Pope got a subscription to playboy we wouldn’t have to deal with that issue.

    What moral objections would teen have over games? Everything you do in the game doesn’t happen in real life, and the only person who could possibly be affected by violent video games is the player.

  15. 0
    KillianD says:

    Actually, as much as i think she’s wrong in several important ways, i do give her credit for this: she didn’t just complain about “the filth our kids play”, she actually tried playing several of the games herself. Again, I disagree with her conclusions pretty much completely…but at least she’s not reprehensible like the many who claim “it corrupts our youth” without even bothering to find out what the hell they’re criticizing. So +2 for that, before I deduct 10,000 for everything else.

    You lost, but gave it a fairer shake than most, so a grudging, minimal respect is warranted.

  16. 0
    Grendal says:

    Wonderful the idiots without any real knowledge of games continue to spout off. Thank god she didn’t get to the chainsaw enemies in RE4.

  17. 0
    Oz ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    She’s quick to distance herself from the so called “moral majority” but her remarks there are pretty much on par with what the fundies would say.

  18. 0
    Azhrarn, Death-of-Faxmachines says:

    to quote ms. McCartney: “but one of her remarks in an interview last week struck me as particularly, and depressingly, modern.”

    This is probably the single most horrible sentence in the entire article, if a person calls a scientific analysis of the available evidence “depressingly modern” you know you’re in trouble, please ms. McCartney, stay with writing your columns, that fewer and fewer people read, and we’ll stay with our “depressingly modern” scientific analyses and computer games.

  19. 0
    Iris ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Yeah, I got pissed when I got stabbed to death by all the guys in the first big area of Resident Evil 4, too. But I didn’t go bitching about how nobody should ever play the game…. I just kept working at it til I started getting the feel for how the Wii remote worked in the game 😛

    I wonder how this woman feels about religious texts such as the Bible. That has some way worse stuff than a bunch of villagers stabbing you to death with pitchforks. It’d be hypocritical if she didn’t think that should be banned as well.

  20. 0
    hilaryduffgta ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “Resident Evil 4: This game shouldn’t be allowed to be sold, even to adults… when I played I was stabbed to death with pitchforks amid fountains of my own blood. This kind of violence can only be bad for you.”

    Bite me all right you have no damn right at all to tell me a 27 year old adult what games i have the “right” to buy….F*** this anti game crap i’m sick and tired of it and i’m beyond the point now where i think we need to “protect the children” nothing says this better then a george carlin quote “F*** The children”

    Damn moron go do something useful

  21. 0
    BaronJuJu ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    @ Christian

    As I said earlier, a bad airbrush job on the part of the art crew. Notice the other three games in her hand are mixed in with her clothing and the tops have been chopped off.

    I’m not sure she was even really holding the games up.

  22. 0
    Ragnaar ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    @Christian Astrup:

    Perhaps she’s showing how dangerous violent video games can be by cutting herself with the game box?

  23. 0
    Christian Astrup ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “Perhaps if more people, including teenagers, were prepared to voice moral objections to this toxic stuff,”

    Toxic stuff like pushing your victorian morals on others, dear?

    Oh and did anybody notice that the original article gets its comments checked before making them public? Yay for constricting free speech!

  24. 0
    DavCube ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “Her comments include:

    Call of Duty 4: Perhaps it might be OK for older teenage boys, but only in small doses.

    Resident Evil 4: This game shouldn’t be allowed to be sold, even to adults… when I played I was stabbed to death with pitchforks amid fountains of my own blood. This kind of violence can only be bad for you.”

    You’re not a scientist, Ma’am. You’re a columnist. You don’t know what’s good for every kid, let alone every person on the whole freaking planet.

  25. 0
    Ebonheart ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I can’t believe I missed this in my first read

    “But one of her remarks in an interview last week struck me as particularly, and depressingly, modern.” She’s upset about comments being MODERN. Just… I can’t, I can’t figure out why people like living in the past. If someone wants to live in the past so badly, go live a theorcracy. You’ll never modernize in a theocracy! I just can’t think of an insult.

  26. 0
    NoFish ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Anyone else notice that she says older teenage “boys” should have their CoD4 time limited? So does that mean girls are okay playing it indefinitely or what?

  27. 0
    Pominator ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Thats it, I demand an intelligence and competence test for all people who are going to be parents, be involved in any sort of news story or be heard by the mass public, why are we attacked by this constant onslaught of sensationalist BS, mixed with waves of absolute stupidity and a clear lack of any form of understanding as to the subject matter of their attackee?

    And we wonder why the world needs more nitroglycerin…

  28. 0
    Simon Roberts ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I caught the Diamond article over at Joystiq and couldn’t help but note her woeful gaming skills. Somebody should’ve gotten her online — being called a “rocket whore” probably would’ve made her faint.

    I agree with McCartney on one point, though: I would recoil at the idea of my kid playing Manhunt upstairs, because I’d rather they were in a family-oriented area so that we could talk about the game together and determine its values as compared to real-life situations. Morality starts at home, right?

  29. 0
    JustChris says:

    I am all for keeping these violent games away from kids, but in the sense that very violent scenes might traumatize them, not in the sense that they will be turned into killing machines.

    If I had nightmares from a horror flick at age 10, the last thing on my mind would be “boy, it would be cool to be like that psycho killer”.

  30. 0
    BaronJuJu ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    By the way, whoever did the airbrush of her holding the games did a horrible job.

    Was she even holding the games she whines about?

  31. 0
    Matthew ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Nice picture. Dead Rising, Clive Barker’s Jericho, Resi 4, Call of Duty.

    One army game. One zombie game based on a classic film. One game filled with sadomasochism and deformed humanoid creatures… from a guy who has written books and movies on the same subject. One game about parasitic infection which earlier in the series was a classic film-style zombie game.

    In *every single one of those games* you would hope to act in the same way as the character(s) you play or else you would die. In three quarters of those games you will never find yourself in that situation in the first place, and in the remaining quarter you would only get there voluntarily and after a sheadload of training.

  32. 0
    Loudspeaker ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    So… You should stab someone with the pitchfork and flower petals fly out? Would it help if the pitch fork was pink or some other fruity color?

    The Byron report has merit saying that these things desensitize violence, however suggesting that you remove the factors that make the violence more real ONLY causes further desensitisation of violence.

    Would you rather someone see that violence has a gruesome outcome or some sort of happy-wonderfulness?

    To me removing blood from a violent scene, movie or game, is the same as removing recoil from a gun. You take away the negative effect which allows you to understand what’s happening is bad.

  33. 0
    GoodRobotUs ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    It’s the ‘Mary Whitehouse’ mathematical theory in action

    ‘Offence taken is inversely proportional to the ability to understand the medium’

  34. 0
    Gift ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    @Zerodash Yeah Monkeythumbs is right, this is a storm in the newspaper tea cup.

    Stuff like this crops up once in a while, usually associated with some crime or other. In this case I think the tabloids are just cueing up to cash in on the Byron report; this is their best stab at being topical. As Dr. Byron’s report has just come out we’ve a lot more newspaper stories than usual, but even on the day of its release TV had next to nothing.

    Give it a day and the Daily Mail will be back to blaming foreigners for our mortgage woes and the EU for making our bananas straight. 😉


  35. 0
    Cidas ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    They do bring up good points. To talk about morality in videogames is a good step forward, although they kind of brushed it away in this paper. Regardless, I think if we know more about what morality stands for in a videogames, to take it from perspective, then we will be better off in understanding the content and meaning of videogames itself. Much like how cinema was initally imagined and slowly re-interperted into what it is today, morality came into question then.
    We are gamers and we know the content matter so well, we represent ourself independent of the rest of society. But, because we are already biased due to our favoring of games, that our interpertation of what is morally accepted in a videogame is very different. Perhaps we need to find the middle ground, and then controversy will stop.
    I am not saying in any way, however that we are to be regulated by some outside interest group.
    Sorry if this was a little bit of a ramble, but the article was interesting and commentary worthy.

  36. 0
    Jeremy says:

    Anne Diamond, for those who haven’t heard of her (and that will be everyone outside Britain), is a Morning TV Presenter. She lost a son to Cot Death(Sudden Infant Syndrome) back in the 80s and did a lot of good work to publicise measures parents could take to help prevent it. Her campaigning got credit for saving many lives. Sh ewas at the forefront od educating people to lay their children face up in bad, for example.

    However, she later disappeared from the TV when she left TV-AM until she reappeared after about 20 years in a Reality TV show Celebrity Fat Camp, where she whined and moaned and eventually walked out, as she wasn’t losing weight. Unfortunately, as is the case these days with the people who act up the worst in these shows, she got paid to come back to the TV, and is clearly acting out the role of grumpy old witch. Let’s face it, why would someone like her be asked to play mature-rated videogames and judge them? It’s for the tantrums. They aren’t seriously asking her for her judgements on how good a game it is, that much is obvious. This is car crash TV, watching the slow-mo wreck of the closing of her career. (A shame, she really was the face of British morning telly, back in her day).

  37. 0
    CenturionRyan says:

    It seems that rather than play the game, she got someone to give her a brief description of them and made up other bits.

    I read the full article and she had at least one inaccuracy in every game she ‘reviewed’.

  38. 0
    Are'el ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Huh, I tried to leave a comment under Diamond’s article, and it didn’t show up. Are they blocking it now because of too much traffic, or is it just because I live in the US?

  39. 0
    Aaron ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I think my favorite part of the whole thing is her retelling of RE4’s story line. A chemical attack huh. I guess that pesky first 5 minutes of the game explaining about the president’s daughter being kidnapped got in the way of the “zombies” stabbing you with pitchforks.

    On the other hand, it’s nice to know that RE4 will have a new storyline next time I play it. I’ll keep my eyes open for chemical attacks and ignore the parasites, kooky religious cults, lack of zombies….nope. Chemical attacks.

  40. 0
    myrpok says:

    Also, is it just me, or does it look like Anne is trying to throw up some bling in this picture? And why are the games being consumed by her body?

  41. 0
    myrpok says:

    @Nova Black
    I noticed the Mario Kart thing, too. Apparently it makes kids go crazy with rage.
    Well, those blue shells were pretty infuriating.

  42. 0
    King of Fiji ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “Yet the truth, surely, is that the majority of us would indeed recoil from the idea that our teenage son or daughter was upstairs playing Manhunt 2… “

    Then maybe alittle less time spent recoiling could be put into better times such as smashing the disc of Manhunt 2 your son and or daughter bought behind your back.

    The god damned problem isn’t kids playing games not intended for their age. Its kids having parentally inept parents.

    Also I’ll admit I get scared when I play Resident Evil 4 at night so how the hell is it desenseitizing anything?

  43. 0
    Are'el ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    We knew this was coming. The Bryon report has made video game critics feel vindicated. While Bryon did say that there is no conclusive evidence that real life violence was connected to video games, she did say that video games raise aggression levels in the short term. And she did recommend stricter measures against games being sold to minors.

    To video game haters, this is all the ammo they need to organize a new surge against gaming. Editorials and bloggers will be coming out of the woodwork to shout, “See?!? See? Video games are the devil!”

    On Diamond’s “reviews,” I find it interesting that while she objected to graphic violence against AI opponents, she had no objections to the tamer violence of Halo3. Yet, Halo comes with multiplayer, which means that you get to shoot up player-controlled avatars. Wouldn’t the more viceral action of multiplayer be more allarming than zombies with pitchforks?

    (Note: I have nothing against multiplayer. I’m just boggled by the “logic” some game critics employ.)

  44. 0
    Strªngعr_Dªngعr says:

    @Wyvern does New Zealand share similar laws to Australia? if so expect a lot of banned games. Australia dictates that any game that is not suitable for a 15 year old is not suitable for anyone. and it is illegal to import “banned” games from other countries.

  45. 0
    Wyvern says:

    Must…resist…urge….to punch Anne Diamond.

    Good grief, I live in this fucking country! I’m suddenly very glad of my decision to move to New Zealand. Are things as bad there? Or do people just not care? I’ve given up hope of a country where games are an accepted artform

  46. 0
    Arad ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “GP: The link on the Jenny McCartney column was sent in by our old pal Jack Thompson, ***in between threats to sue us.***”

    That right there makes this entire article worthy of reading. It’s like the build-up to the world’s biggest punchline.

  47. 0
    Weighted Companion Cube ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I’m quite surprised that GP didn’t create a story about the ruling coming down on JT not being disbarred. I was prepared and everything. Now what am I going to do with these tissues and suicide booths?

  48. 0
    mogbert ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    They should include a special RE4 scenario just for her. In the beginning of the game, you have the choice to leave. You do so, you get the game over, the credits roll, and you get small movie of you being stipped of your job and fired, then the ending picture of Chris wearing a paper hat and asing if you would like to super size that.

    RE4 was the ONLY RE game I could play, and only because I don’t like horror survival. It’s surprising that the game that she hated so much that she feels it should be banned (aka: “shouldn’t be allowed to be sold, even to adults”). Well, it’s a good thing that here in America we have the First Amendment, along with a lawyer that obviously doean’t know what it means as he supports people who are against it.

    You know, in one light, he is a First Amendment Lawyer… If you think about it, both the defense and the prosecuter in a murder case could be considered homicide lawyers, it’s just a case of which side they are on. For our good friend JT, it’s obvious which side of the First Amendment he is on.

  49. 0
    Arashi ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    The bad Photoshop job is driving me nuts. It seriously looks like she’s absorbing the violent games into her body. “Look what these games are doing to meeeeeee”

    I feel that what critics like this are missing is that with ANY video game, one keeps in mind that it’s fantasy; it’s not real. While young kids may still be trying to develop that “line” (and while I don’t think kids should play games like RE4), teenagers and adults have defined that line. I understand her role as a parent, but I see her as a “lost” parent. By “lost,” I mean that she has no clue what she’s talking about, especially when it comes to the ratings game.

    Also, common sense alert, Ms. Diamond – if you pick up a game named “Resident Evil 4” that has a character in a bullet-proof vest holding a gun and the word “EVIL” in big letters, what do you *think* it will be about? Same for “Call of Duty 4” – guy in full-out army gear, running with a gun in hand and choppers in back.

    Not all game art is that obvious, but it still makes me want to let out a loud, obnoxious “DUHHHHHHH”.

  50. 0
    Monkeythumbs ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    @ Zerodash – The truth is that what you’ve seen on recently are the sum total of a few isolated incidents of the mainstream print media bashing games. I’m sure that the printed press would LOVE to whip a true ‘moral panic’ (as that would shift more copies), but the fact of the matter is most people over the age of 40 in the UK think that videogames aren’t worthy of thir attention in the same way they don’t think comic books, cartoons or trading cards are worthy of their attention. This makes it very difficult for the papers to engineer any kind of moral outrage or public panic, much as they would like to, which I suppose is why they keep on trying.

    The truth is, until television news (I’m thinking the BBC, ITV and Ch.4 rather than Sky) starts paying attention to videogames and broadcasts stereotyped views into people homes on a daily basis, or until The Sun/The Mirror start serious, prolonged negative coverage, this will remain and only amount to a few isolated incidents in the “Little England” right-wing media. However, so far all the FOX News-isms are confined to the papers, whose readership are all 40 + years old.

  51. 0
    Zerodash ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Once again, what is going on in the UK these days? I don’t think the moral panic got nearly as intense anywhere else.

  52. 0
    Grubb says:

    I remember reading this in the paper and considering it nonsense that would be passed off by normal people as sensationalist. Unfortunately my mother decided the the woman was right in her attack of games, I did try to explain the other points of view but logic no longer applies once something has been in the newspaper, as the fact it’s been printed odviously means it’s right.

    I also recall a radio phone in about the same subject earlier that day where parents were calling in and claiming outrage over violent video games, I believe several actually said that they thought the age rating on the front was a ‘skill level’ for the game, and had been tricked by their children into buying it.

  53. 0
    Caffine ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Just a question. If we ban video games with lots of blood, fighting, gore, etc. what will happen to all of our favorite TV shows and movies? …. Wait, scratch that. Our favorite books! Look at Tolkien! Trip through Moria anyone? Or how about a nice major battle or two? How about the plunder and twisting of a small village? Or classics like “All Quiet on the Western Front”? Or “War and Peace”? Or how about “Moby Dick”? Baptizing a harpoon in a bucket of blood? In depth description of the blubber stripping and boiling process at sea? Oh, lets go back even farther. Sun Tzu! Here’s someone who is telling us how to be better generals and leaders during war! Or Machiavelli? He’s telling us its better to be feared the loved.

  54. 0
    Nessmk2 ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I think it’s fairly obvious that she didn’t play these games much at all. I mean, somehow she got the idea that Master Chief is the last person alive after… something… And she quotes her SONS in her review of the games. What credible sources. “My sons say that all their friends play it, so they must play it.”

    Likewise, I don’t think this woman got far in RE4, either. It sounds like she died on the first 4 guys over and over and over… I mean, she never meantioned the chainsaw. And I’ve never played Jerhico, but it sounds like she found the first monster, got scared and quit.

    This has to be an april fool’s day joke… But it’s not… T_T

  55. 0
    Papa Midnight ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Call of Duty 4: Perhaps it might be OK for older teenage boys, but only in small doses.

    Yes, we’ll make sure to tell the militias they’ll be fighting to only shoot at them “in small doses”.

  56. 0
    squigs says:

    The BBFC says its illegal to sell Call Of Duty 4 to anyone under 15. PEGI recommends 16+. The law and industry self-regulation seems to be pretty much in step with Anne Diamond’s opinions.

    To be fair, this was pretty balanced from the Mail – they did at least mention that there are ratings. Most of the sensationalism comes from Anne Diamond who didn’t seem to realise this.

  57. 0
    Warren says:

    It is rather like getting some woman who hasn’t got a TV or seen any movies (except “Jungle Book” in the cinema back in 1967, let’s say) to watch some 15/18 rated DVDs (“Scarface”, “Dead or Alive: the Movie”, “Black Hawk Down”, “Saw”, “Hostel”, and so on) and then asked what she thought of them and if she considered DVDs like this as suitable for children!

  58. 0
    Bob says:

    I feel sorry for Anne Diamond though. Bless her little cotton socks; she was only ever a morning show presenter, about 10 years ago.

    As someone who never plays computer games, she probably only ever saw mario before. Can you imagine the shock when suddenly she’s thrust into a warzone in the quite excellent COD4, or bitten / hacked and generally gutted in RE4.

    Its like being told your going to see Bambi, only to have ‘Hot Bambi- bikini girl gets it A***’ pounded in front of you.
    Poor woman.

    I just wish they would stop picking Adult games to show a Child gamer point.
    Its like saying kids shouldn’t watch tv because there are films like Zombie Diarys out there. Irrelevant , pointless and very very boring.

  59. 0
    Steve ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Don’t try to leave an anti-story comment at the Mail’s site, all comments are reviewed “and may not be published”.

    Way to go to get a balanced view.

  60. 0
    Buncha Kneejerks says:

    To be fair Skyler, it did appear as if she played them. But the Daily Mail cannot be trusted, its a fear mongering tabloid, hell just look at the picture of Anne in the article. Can you see the photoshop? Wonder why they felt the need to doctor it.

  61. 0
    Altair says:

    They should make the vidja gaem cases out of harder plastic and make the “M” embossed, that way it will leave a big ol’ fuckin’ imprint/bump on their forehead when you hit them with it! xD

  62. 0
    Azhrarn, Death-of-Faxmachines says:

    Oh dear, post got eaten by the system. :)

    All this twisting of a good balanced scientific review is disgusting. But what annoys me even more is the fact that these people aren’t thinking.

    The kids can’t buy those games in the UK. Any game with a PEGI rating of 15+ or more is also rated by the BBFC, whose ratings are enforcable by law! So only the parents buy the games, which is my ms. Byron called for increasing parental awareness on Game ratings. (as if the large 18+ on the front isn’t enough) How convenient that the newspapers forget mentioning this… Technophobes, the lot of them.

  63. 0
    Skyler ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Yet another person that slams video games without actually having played them. And yet another parent that wants the government to legislate her parental and moral views. It’s one thing to hate video games, but it’s an other to censor content for everyone.

  64. 0
    Buncha Kneejerks says:

    “GP: News flash, Anne. Everybody who plays this game at one time or another gets stabbed to death with pitchforks amid fountains of their own blood. But it’s virtual blood. It’s a game. Are you suggesting that zombie movies be banned, as well?”

    Whats the point in saying that? Its not like she will read it. Your trying to stir the hornets nest again aren’t you. 😉

  65. 0
    Clever ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “Yet the truth, surely, is that the majority of us would indeed recoil from the idea that our teenage son or daughter was upstairs playing Manhunt 2…”

    I see the real problem here. Parent’s in the UK are incapable of using stairs. It’s so obvious now – see, she’s worried about what her kids are doing because she lacks the physical ability to use stairs and is therefore unable to supervise them herself due to crass biological limits. And here I was expecting her to walk up there and get involved in her kid’s life – oh what a cruel taskmaster I’ve become to expect such feats from the handicapped. Carry on you brave soldier *tear* carry on…

  66. 0
    Altair says:

    Ban the movies before the games you *censored* ugly *censored* *censored* *censored* stupid *censored* (continues on like this for another hour or so)

  67. 0
    Canary Wundaboy ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    The Telegraph?
    OH, the paper with rapidly dimishing circulation due mainly to the growth in news via the internet…so would be looking for any excuse to make technology seem dangerous.


  68. 0
    NovaBlack ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “Harmful: A Government-commissioned report says that video games can desensitise children to violence”

    see im REALLY confused because im pretty sure the byron report (im reading it right now) says there is no conclusive proof, as the only valid studues are flawed when looked at for real world application… and that there are many studies suggesting that they have no effect.

    The funniest thing was the picture of …DUM DUM DUM Mario kart 64, with the quote about harmful effects of violent games.

  69. 0
    EvilJez says:

    It’s the Daily Mail… generally recognised as the worst paper in the country, only bigotted little old ladies read it anyway, who cares!

  70. 0
    Soldatlouis ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Oh, and I almost forgot Daily Mail’s caption, just after the picture :

    “Harmful: A Government-commissioned report says that video games can desensitise children to violence”

    Anyway, what can you expect from the gutter press except the gutter ?

  71. 0
    Elalonna ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “the majority of us would indeed recoil from the idea that our teenage son or daughter was upstairs playing Manhunt 2?

    How stupid does a parent have to be to fail to notice whether or not their son or daughter play a violent videogame? And if they do notice, and if the parent is so concerned, then they should do something about it. On their own. Without the help of the government. Or the media. Or people who have no authority or connection to games.

    We gamers dont deserve this crap. Seriously.

  72. 0
    Pominator ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I have to say that I am glad that somebody out there knows what is best for us! I mean England would be a cesspit full of chavs and drugs and depression if she hadn’t stepped in…

    Oh wait…

    As a gamer I am regularly at the butt of many jokes and lots of abuse by other people who actually believe this bullcrap, it is people like her that are leading to me getting attacked in my youth, not the videogames which she so zealously attacks

  73. 0
    Soldatlouis ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    One more thing :

    Usually, when the media need to ask someone’s “verdict”, they go see an “expert”, or at least someone who has enough moral authority and knowledge of what he’s talking about to give an opinion that has some value. But in this case, they ask a person who has absolutely no knowledge of games (and probably thought games were for kids until now).

    And you wonder why mainstream media lost almost all credibility over the years ?

  74. 0
    Robert Farr ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Yeah, it seems she hated the games so much that she stabbed herself with them, if the picture is to be believed.

    Really quite sad.

  75. 0
    NovaBlack ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “Yet the truth, surely, is that the majority of us would indeed recoil from the idea that our teenage son or daughter was upstairs playing Manhunt 2”

    let me say this clearly…

    so… dont.. let.. underage… kids… play… it..
    The.. rating.. is.. on… the… box….

    lol you should send JT a link back to the sections of the Byron report, saying there is no conclusive evidence!
    lol n why would he link that, is Anne Diamond the authority on all things?(she is a Z list daytime tv celeb here in the uk, who nobody cares about)

  76. 0
    Untouchable ( User Karma: 0 ) says:


    All those games are things that explicitly state that there are high levels of violence in them and there is therefore the expectation that it will be vile.

    Love the fact that older teenage boys of a similar age can be shipped into a warzone andy yet should only be exposed to Call of Duty 4 in small doses

  77. 0
    Soldatlouis ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “I have never got into computer games”

    It says it all. I bet her last video game reference was Pac-Man or Super Mario.

    Oh, and I suppose she’s “never got into” slasher movies either, considering her remark on “Resident Evil 4”.

  78. 0
    StealthKnight ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    being virtually stabbed by pitch forks is obviously bad for your health. Leon will die and that is a pain in the butt.

    “Some of the games were so mindless it would be hard to see them as a destructive influence.” So games are not bad for you, she just hates video games and the idea of people playing them. from what I understood

  79. 0
    Evilninja says:

    Jack only hears what Jack wants to hear, which is to say anything that won’t force him to undertake the troublesome and shameful task of changing his mind about something. These other people seem to be cut from the same cloth.

  80. 0
    Spooky ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    “if only I knew their content.”

    Yes, if only there were some way of working out what content there was in a video game … if only!


  81. 0
    MonkeyFace ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Wow I really do love the GP remark=

    GP: “Older teenage boys” can join the real British Army and be shipped to Afghanistan. But it’s best to limit their COD4?”

  82. 0
    Ichi says:

    I simply have to say about how dumbstruck I continue to be after these reports.

    I honestly am very surprised at how little faith these people have in peoples ability to distinguish reality from virtual.

    Or on the flip side, what people will do to get ratings and or coverage?

    No offense Jenny whats your face but your no expert on the topic

  83. 0
    Tye The Czar says:

    This is where we should have Aaron McGrudger come in and just call her a hater like he did with critics of his Boondocks comic strip, oy.

Leave a Reply